The Forbidden One

With the new banlist now in effect since the start of September, deck recipes have shifted here and there to make way for the addition/banning of certain cards. Some deck strategies have fallen out of favor, while other recipes are starting to gain popularity.

Though technically done before in other varieties, I decided to put together my own take on an Exodia strategy. I play random games here and there on Dueling Network for fun. Exodia is a very unique way to win in the children’s card game world. By gathering five specific cards in your hand, you can declare an automatic victory. In a way, Exodia is technically the strongest monster in Yu-Gi-Oh!/Duel Monsters for this very reason.

Exodia is very iconic for this game, especially with the scene below.

Ah, nostalgia. ūüėĄ

The Current Deck Recipe

Left Leg of the Forbidden One x1
Left Arm of the Forbidden One x1
Exodia the Forbidden One x1
Right Arm of the Forbidden One x1
Right Leg of the Forbidden One x1
Sangan x1
Mystic Tomato x1
Blue-Eyes White Dragon x3
The White Stone of Legend x3
Debris Dragon x1
Elemental HERO Stratos x1
Destiny HERO – Dogma x2
Destiny HERO – Plasma x2
Destiny HERO – Dreadmaster x2

Destiny Draw x3
Trade-In x3
Monster Reborn x1
One Day of Peace x3
Cards of Consonance x3
Allure of Darkness x1
Pot of Duality x2

Reckless Greed x3

Extra Deck
Photon Papilloperative x1

The Strategy
Exodia, of course, requires you to gather the key cards as quickly as possible. It is Duel Monsters 101 to have the bare minimum of just 40 cards for this feat. This strategy is all about trying to use whatever methods you can to draw as many cards as possible during a turn, until you hold all five pieces to declare victory.

This is a very niche strategy that can catch opponents off-guard. However, this particular deck recipe is very¬†susceptible¬†to attacks and can be easily countered. I would categorize this deck as “casual” because it is fun to nab a win from your opponent who doesn’t expect Exodia, but it is certainly far from competitive.¬†You are a sitting duck each turn essentially.

This particular Exodia deck is a mix of Deep Dragon Draw/Destiny Draw Exodia. Quite the mouthful, don’t you think? ūüėõ

Basically, this deck is all about using a variety of draw engines to work toward thinning the deck quickly. With a good hand, it is very common to draw 10+ cards during a given turn. Potentially very efficient.

Key Cards
Assembling the five pieces of Exodia is the main point of this deck, obviously. Each individual piece in hand means you are that much closer to nabbing the win. It can be very exciting/nerve-wracking when you are need to draw the last pieces from your deck in a too-close-for-comfort Duel with your opponent.

If any of these cards get messed with by any way (through being discarded, milled and so forth), it is ample time to throw in the towel because you are, simply put, screwed. The cards individually are very vulnerable by themselves. Each time I play this deck, I try to gun it as quickly as possible to the finish line. If you are unlucky or your opponent is aggressive in taking you down, you will not last long at all.

Card Combo Examples
This deck is all about the draw engine. It focuses heavily on creating card advantage and eating through your deck, gathering one Exodia piece gradually until you can hopefully muster out a win.

Below is a simple example of how speedy this draw engine can be.

Use Cards of Consonance with The White Stone of Legend.

This nets you two cards, plus you can add a Blue-Eyes White Dragon card to your hand afterward.

Now dump this Blue-Eyes White Dragon into the Graveyard with Trade-In, which adds two more cards to your hand.

Chances are you have drawn at least one Destiny HERO card by now, which means you can probably combo it with the Destiny Draw you probably have on hand as well. You can discard the Destiny HERO to draw two more cards.

As you can see, there is a lot of synergy with this deck when your luck is good. I really emphasize how it is pretty normal to draw 10+ cards in one turn with a good hand. You draw, draw and draw until you can get Exodia’s five parts together. It is all about the card advantage and speed of this draw engine!

Exodia has a lot of weaknesses that can be outright exploitable, and at times with very little effort on your opponent’s part. Expect a lot of defeats when your opponent just happens to play one specific card that halts Exodia right in his tracks. It is why some people in the Yu-Gi-Oh! community bash¬†Exodia decks in general. Exodia, despite being the strongest monster in the game when assembled, is technically speaking very gimmicky. Losing just one Exodia piece for whatever reason can spell your doom.

Some cards include …

Enemy cards that force you to discard or mill are very threatening for an Exodia deck. Again, every single piece of Exodia is precious. You are playing the odds with hoping your opponent does not stop you as you try to draw more cards from you deck. In particular, be very wary of a Dark World deck. Dark World is an extremely popular deck archetype that everyone and their grandmother plays, at least on Dueling Network. It will give you a real headache with this deck strategy.

Random Tips with This Deck Strategy
Please note that this deck recipe is always subject to change. It is the nature of card games – decks are adjusted and tweaked constantly until you find the winning formula. But for now, I think the foundation is at least established.

Some notes about this deck:

– Every card has a purpose in this deck recipe, from Mystic Tomato‘s searching power to find Sangan or how Elemental HERO Stratos is used to search for more Destiny HERO cards for discard fodder.

– Use Pot of Duality to scout out the next three cards. In some cases, an Exodia card may not be what you want right away. Consider grabbing a discard-fodder card that you can use to continue drawing more cards. Remember that the thinner the deck – the higher chance the Exodia cards will naturally make their way to your hand anyway. This deck is just a huge case of probability.

One Day of Peace¬†is basically the only card in this deck that buys you time against your opponent’s damage. In some situations, using only one of these cards per turn will prove more effective when you need to drag the game out as long as possible.

Reckless Greed¬†is very handy to bait your opponent’s backrow destroyers.

– This deck is all about hitting the pedal to the metal. From the very start, you are trying to rush for the “W.” In many cases, you do not really have any leeway to dink around. You need to draw cards until you hope all the Exodia cards are in your hand. This is a luck-based deck by nature. Unless you believe in the Heart of the Cards, Lady Luck is the only friend you can depend on.

In Conclusion
This is a fun deck to play because of how brisk a game can turn out. I love being able to combo after combo to nab a bunch of card draws in a row. Alternative victories in games are often very fun and satisfying to pull off, though playing an Exodia deck at times can be very frustrating. The pieces may seem extremely elusive when you really need to form the strongest monster in the game.

But when you do manage to gather all five special cards¬†…



Fun fact: there is a 1/658008 chance (1.62 percent) of beginning the game with all the necessary Exodia cards to declare an automatic win. This is assuming you only have one of each legal card (as in no extra copies).

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